In a major update to the free-to-play Call of Duty®Warzone™, developers reimagine the landscape of Verdansk, syncing the map into the timeline of the Cold War era.
Verdansk has fallen. Just over a year after developers Infinity Ward and Raven Software first introduced players to Warzone™, Verdansk as we know it has met its end in a devastating nuclear attack.
But that’s not the end of the story. There’s more to this place, which has an important history steeped in the Cold War era and is now introduced as Verdansk ’84. We supported the transformation with a special in-game, limited-time event and then introduced the reimagined Verdansk ’84 with massive changes all across the map.
Here’s how we did it:
In-Game Narrative: The Destruction of Verdansk
When players logged into Warzone on April 21, they were greeted with a message: “Attempts to contain the outbreak have failed. Going back is not an option.” In the menu, a single playlist: “The Destruction of Verdansk, Part 1.”
In the two-part event, your only goal was to survive, and that’s short-lived. The map was quickly overrun by zombies, and every player who falls becomes a zombie themselves until the last player goes down, activating the launch of a nuclear missile to wipe Verdansk off its undead infestation.
In “The Destruction of Verdansk, Part 2,” players deployed to Rebirth Island 10-minutes prior to the attack, witnessing the destruction firsthand before being dropped into the new Verdansk ’84 map for the first time.
This is similar to the limited-time “Know Your History” event for the reveal of Black Ops Cold War, which we discussed in a recent Newsroom article exploring social play in Warzone. The effect is the same: Draw operators deeper into the world of Call of Duty® by letting them play out limited-time in-game events that lead to major reveals.
Verdansk ’84, Fully Reimagined
Make no mistake, taking a map as large as Verdansk and reimagining it for the Cold War era is a huge task, and the developers led by Raven Software wanted to do more than just alter the landscape. From minor details to major new Points of Interest, the map was completely refreshed to optimize gameplay and offer players a chance to duke it out in totally new environments.
Here are five of the most significant changes that occurred in the transformation of Verdansk:
A sprawling complex with a central island base, three gondola stations complete with working gondolas, and a lower river valley to ascend on foot, vehicle, or ascender. There are opposing helipads and two command centers, one built into a rock island.
This single location is bigger than many Multiplayer maps yet should be familiar to veterans of the original Black Ops.
Perhaps the biggest new landmark, and certainly the easiest to spot, is the Grid Radar Array. Before the WHP set up a camp on this overlook, there was a radar base dominated by this OTH (over-the-horizon) radar defense system, comprised of 12 linked cage towers and a precarious gantry platform, multi-story access ladders, an ascender, and exposed (but amazing) views.
Need a sightline over Central Verdansk? This new point of interest has you covered.
Before it became a quarry, Verdansk’s northeastern corner was known for being the region’s largest salt mine. This sprawling space has two large (and currently sealed) entrances, numerous old mine conduits, and a large, craggy hillside to explore about the containment ponds and factories.
The pine barrens above the salt mine are a great place to watch the action down below, while the red Crystalizing Pools run red with… the beautiful chemical reaction of salt.
The Verdansk Sparks are playing elsewhere in Kastovia, as the old arena is being dismantled in preparation for construction of a new regional Stadium. For the moment, the demolition site is still open – much more open than the modern-day Stadium, in fact – with high vantage points such as an announcer booth and huge archaic scoreboard with amazing sightlines, along with a parked crane to drop onto.
There is also an interior and an underside walkway running around the perimeter to a hole in the arena wall, which is big enough to allow a Cargo Truck onto the pitch.
Over in Krovnik Farmland stands a domed Town Hall structure surrounded by a vegetable market, a warehouse, a water tower, a small gas station, and other outbuildings.
This facsimile of the fan-favorite Standoff map features a fully explorable central structure with numerous interior windows, and plenty of different sightlines and routes to learn.
New Map, New Guide
When Warzone first launched in 2020, we worked closely with our web and design teams to release the free, fully interactive Official Warzone Strategy Guide, which includes hundreds of tips, an interactive tactical map, loadout suggestions, and more to help players become the elite Operators they’re destined to be.
With the introduction of Verdansk ’84, we’ve fully updated the guide, with over 400 Points of Interest detailed in the interactive Atlas. Check it out here if you’re so inclined.
The Story Continues
Whether you’re here as a fan of the game or you’re simply interested in what we do here at Activision Blizzard King, we hope you enjoy the work our teams have put into this massive Warzone project. We got here thanks to the tremendous support of our players, and we feel honored to see over 100 million players engaged in this experience.
We’re just getting started, so come back to the Newsroom often for more Warzone news and other features celebrating the work and people at Activision Blizzard.
For more information and the latest intel on Warzone, visit www.callofduty.com/warzone and follow @CallofDuty on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
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